FAQ – VPN Privacy
What does a VPN hide?
A VPN hides your IP address from the websites you visit. Your IP address tracks your device type, location, identity, and activity while using the Internet. With a VPN enabled, instead of connecting directly to a website, your computer first connects to a secure remote server and sends it all of your Internet traffic for that session. Once at the VPN server, your data goes out over the Internet with an IP address that is different from yours. The data is encrypted during this process so no one can tell what you’re doing. This way when you connect to an insecure wireless or public network, nobody will be able to snoop on what you’re viewing or downloading online!
What is VPN security?
A VPN (virtual private network) is one of the best ways to increase your security over an Internet connection. Privacy advocates overwhelmingly recommend VPNs because they keep all of your Internet activity safe and secure with encryption, and unblock web sites that might be censored or blocked in certain countries. A VPN also makes it impossible for someone to know what you’re doing online, as it creates an encrypted tunnel between you and the server. Simply put, your data is not safe without a VPN installed on all devices.
What does a VPN protect?
A VPN will protect your internet service data from hackers. It is a way to be reasonably certain that no one can access or monitor your browsing history, nor intercept any information you send out (like credit cards, passwords, etc.). Using a VPN means that you are the only person who can see the websites you visit.
Can the WiFi owner see what sites I visit with a VPN?
For the most part, no. VPNs are designed to disguise your IP address so the owner of your wireless network cannot tell what you’re doing on it.
What is an anti-DDoS VPN?
The purpose of an anti-DDoS VPN, as the name states, is to protect or defend a system from Distributed Denial of Service attacks.
What is a VPN firewall?
A VPN firewall is a service that will monitor your outgoing packet information and only allow requests to the systems you want.
What is a VPN token?
A “VPN token” is any type of security token used by VPN software to function. Basically, a “VPN token” is some sort of authentication code or credential that the VPN needs in order to start up properly.
Does a VPN hide what you search?
Yes. While using a VPN, everything during your online session is encrypted within a private tunnel.
How does a VPN keep me secure?
A VPN secures your data by adding an extra layer of encryption and assigning your connection an anonymous IP address. After installing a VPN, all the information you transmit will be encrypted so that third parties cannot intercept and decode it. This line of defense is particularly important in areas where online surveillance and monitoring are prevalent; for example, China or Vietnam where Internet access is restricted and heavily monitored.
Can someone track my real IP address when I use a VPN?
You can track someone’s IP address when they are connected to a VPN—but not their real one. Your VPN provider runs its own DNS and this makes it possible for anyone tracking you to get on top of you by tracking your DNS requests. Your true physical IP address will always be hidden from the public eye as it doesn’t interact directly with any networks other than the VPN.
How do you detect if someone is using a VPN?
There is not any definitive way to detect if someone is using a VPN or not.
Does a VPN hide your IP address?
Yes. A VPN hides your real IP address and assigns you an anonymous IP address that is often shared with hundreds of other users.
Can government agencies track people using a VPN?
Government agencies are primarily interested in following people who have a reason for concern. If you’re using a VPN to unblock Netflix or YouTube, chances are that the government isn’t going to care about what you’re doing, but if you’re trying to hide your identity because you have something shady going on then they’ll care a lot more. Even the best VPNs can only do so much when a government agency steps in asking for customer logs. Opt for a VPN with a zero log policy and anonymous payment methods for the highest levels of anonymity online.
How does the police track VPN users?
The police attempt to track VPN users with hardware, software, and both WiFi and cell tower triangulation. However, updates to VPNs happen quite frequently, which means it is difficult for police to keep their tracking methods up to date.
Do VPNs prevent you from getting hacked?
Most VPNs are not a full suite security solution, as they usually do not cover hardware or offline protection. In this age, there is no such thing as one single magical tool that can fully secure you from being hacked or intruded upon. A VPN is an essential tool for any person or company, as it’s one more layer to keep your online data secure.
Is online banking safe with a VPN?
Yes. When you’re using a VPN, your data is encrypted as it’s sent from your computer to the server, so there’s no need for worry that someone might intercept any personal information or hack into any transactions made on an unprotected network. Rest assured that banking with a VPN is much safer than banking without one!
Should you use a VPN when using a public WiFi spot?
Yes, we recommend using a VPN when using public WiFi. It will ensure that your traffic is encrypted and much harder to detect, leading to improved security.
How does a VPN provide anonymity?
VPNs provide anonymity by encrypting your data and replacing your IP address. This encryption process is what allows you to enjoy a secure browsing session without worrying about someone looking at sensitive data or monitoring where you go on the Internet.
What is SSL?
SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer, and it’s a protocol that provides encryption and authentication of data between two endpoints. Data sent through SSL includes a symmetric key which is then negotiated upon in order to establish an encrypted session (or set of packets) between the two endpoints. This “encryption only” version is standard today. For more details, see this article on SSL.
What is OpenVPN?
OpenVPN is an open-source software application that implements virtual private network ( VPN) techniques to create secure point-to-point or site-to-site connections in routed or bridged configurations and remote access facilities.
What is IPsec?
IPsec is a strong encryption and authentication system. IPsec builds on the proven security of both asymmetric cryptography and symmetric cryptography to provide government-grade protection. Unlike other VPN technologies, IPSec secures each data packet individually by using dynamic blockchain keys while the packets are in transit to make sure each packet reaches its destination securely with no interference from a third party.
What is L2TP?
L2TP – Layer 2 Tunneling Protocol is a standardized VPN technology that transmits encrypted data packets through the internet via an intermediary server. L2TP’s interoperability with different platforms makes it one of the preferred and most popular VPN protocols. It is often used by organizations as part of their site-to-site or end user remote access VPN implementation. Ranging from mobile devices to computers, almost all operating systems are compatible with L2TP using standard open source server software.
What is IKEv2?
IKEv2 is a VPN protocol that offers users additional security and speed.It competes with technologies like PPTP, L2TP and OpenVPN. Like IKEv1, it creates an encrypted channel to establish a connection but uses IPsec as its underlying encryption technology. With this protocol, traffic can be sent securely over UDP port 4500 in addition to TCP port 500 or 443.
What is the best VPN protocol?
There are a whole lot of different protocols, but most agree that OpenVPN is the best. The three most popular protocol options for a VPN’s security are: OpenVPN, IKEv2, L2TP/IPsec.
PPTP is quickly becoming obsolete because of what VPN protocol?
The VPN protocol PPTP is quickly becoming obsolete because of the widespread adoption of OpenVPN.
What VPN protocol should I use?
We typically suggest OpenVPN. The older VPN protocols are vulnerable to several well-documented attacks that use only a few kilobytes of traffic, so it is important to use the strongest possible encryption available.
What is PPTP?
PPTP stands for Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol and creates a secure VPN connection using the User Datagram Protocol (UDP) instead of transmitting data, voice, or video packets. It’s popular because it provides excellent speed and security due to its use of IPsec encryption. In contrast to other VPN protocols, PPTP uses only one protocol: The Point-to-Point Protocol (PPP), which is a connection oriented Layer 2 dial up protocol used on digital telephone lines and in dial up networks for Internet services over conventional analog telephone lines.
What is MPLS?
MPLS, or Multiprotocol Label Switching is an Internet Protocol-based computer networking method for delivering high speed data packets over local area networks.
What is the most secure VPN protocol?
IPsec is the most secure VPN protocol. IPsec is a standards-based, open-source, strong encryption layer that can be utilized to encrypt data as it’s transmitted over the Internet. In order to use this protocol for maximum security, you should choose a trusted authentication key configuration and IKE encryption algorithm. If at all possible, try and avoid PPTP or L2TP – they’re not nearly as secure.
What is the fastest VPN protocol?
The fastest VPN protocol is OpenVPN. However, the maximum speed of a VPN connection depends on the available bandwidth and performance of the network connections between the client and the server, as well as any specific configuration limitations imposed by either provider.
VPNs & Your Internet Service Provider (ISP)
If I use a VPN can my ISP track what I download?
Not necessarily. VPNs work by encrypting your communications from you to the Internet, creating a virtual tunnel that others can’t see inside of. This means whatever is happening within the tunnel stays within it. But ISPs know where most VPNs are being used because they are enabled in the software – so they can detect when a customer connects and starts using one even if they cannot currently see what is being downloaded or uploaded.
What does my ISP see when I use a VPN?
Your ISP can potentially see that a VPN is in use, but they don’t know who is using it, which sites are being visited, or what data is being uploaded/downloaded. In other words, they know that there is traffic coming from VPN servers based on their connection logs, but they can’t tell what is going through the tunnel because all of the data is encrypted.
Is it possible for my Internet provider to know if I'm using a VPN?
Yes. It is hypothetically possible that your ISP has the capability of detecting traffic coming from a VPN, and for them to match what you’re doing up with the IP addresses associated with a particular VPN provider. In practicality, it’s more likely they’ll have gone through their logs and matched up traffic volume on an individual basis against IPs in question, along with any other customer accounts hooked up to whatever data center or server that might be pertinent. It’s an arduous process that is only resorted to for extreme anomalies.
Does my ISP see my search history with a VPN?
No. Your internet provider will only see encrypted data.
Proxy vs. VPN
What is the difference between a proxy and a VPN?
VPNs protect your data by encrypting it before sending it on the Internet. It masks your IP address and location to allow you access to blocked sites, and prevents ISPs from being able to track you. On the other hand, a proxy server doesn’t involve encryption of data sent between the browser and the proxy. A hacker can intercept information being sent between a Netflix user and a proxy server in Russia, which could reveal personal or embarrassing details– like an individual’s viewing habits. Proxies are great for anonymity, but don’t provide the protection of a VPN.
What is a SOCKS5 proxy?
A SOCKS5 proxy is a specialized type of web proxy, which bypasses Internet filters by transmitting data through a remote access point. It has been constructed in such a way that it can disguise the connection of a normal user from an administrator. SOCKS5 proxies are divided up into two types: Transparent SOCKS and Non-transparent SOCKS. Transparent means that from the application you’re using, no proxy should be shown. Non transparent implies to hide the use of SOCKS5 by some other tunnelling protocol (e.g.: FTP).
Which one is better - a proxy or VPN?
A VPN is better than a proxy because it offers more privacy, as well as security for browsing sites that are blocked. Both of these are anonymizing networks, but a VPN can offer more security and networking abilities than just forwarding traffic to another IP address.
What is the difference between Shadowsocks and a VPN?
There are a number of different discrepancies between VPNs and shadowsocks, but the most basic answer to this question is that Shadowsocks does not encrypt your traffic.
VPN & Tor
Should you use a VPN with Tor?
A VPN with Tor will increase the safety of your connection and data, while still allowing you to benefit from both technologies. Tor is great for protecting your privacy online, as it bounces your location and Internet activity around different points in a network. A VPN adds an extra layer of security on top by encrypting all your traffic. Both Tor and a VPN are favored choices when connecting to public WiFi networks.
What's the difference between VPN and Tor?
Tor protects you from people seeing your browsing habits, while VPN protects you against network-based threats such as eavesdropping and denial of service attacks. TOR simply routes traffic across various nodes around the world, whereas VPNs encrypt information before transmitting it through different networks.
Is a Tor Browser safe to use as a VPN?
It is possible to use Tor as a VPN. However, the experience will be far worse than when using a standard VPN service for two reasons: 1) Tor Browser has low bandwidth so video and streaming are noticeably slowed down, and 2) Tor Browser leaks your IP address occasionally. We recommend using a VPN in addition to a Tor Browser for the best privacy and security.
What are the risks of using VPN and Tor together?
One of the main risks of using VPN and Tor is that it will be more difficult for you to bypass firewalls on different websites. Your Internet may also be slower and less reliable since some connections can go through many steps before they reach their ultimate destination. Of course, there are many benefits to using this combo, including very strong online privacy and security.